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Miss Nobody (2010)
DVD Released: 9/27/2011
All Ratings out of
Review by Mike Long, Posted on 9/23/2011
Wow, it has been a long time, but it's time for another round of "I've heard of these people, why haven't I heard of this movie?" Although, today's version is more of a "character actor/second tier performer" edition. So, the people in this movie aren't necessarily movie stars, but if you haven't heard of them, you'll definitely recognize them. You may remember, with most of these movies, it's very understandable why they were released with little fanfare. But, we're always looking for that movie which will buck the trend. Does Miss Nobody have what it takes?
Leslie Bibb stars in Miss Nobody as Sarah Jane McKinney, a shy woman who lives with her mother (Kathy Baker) in a boarding house. Sarah Jane works as a secretary at Judge Pharmaceuticals. At the urging of her best friend, Charmaine (Missi Pyle), Sarah Jane decides to fudge her resume and go for a promotion, and much to her surprise, she gets it. However, when she arrives at work for the first day of her new job, she finds Milo Beeber (Brandon Routh) in her office. Milo explains that there was a last minute change and that he's taken the position. But, he allows Sarah Jane to stay on as his assistant. Milo then makes a pass at Sarah Jane, and things end very badly...for Milo. Following this, Sarah Jane regains her promotion and takes over Milo's pet project, a new Alzheimer's drug. With her newfound job comes a new sense of confidence and power, and Sarah Jane finds that if you don't agree with a co-worker, the easiest thing to do is to simply get rid of them.
In the past, we've seen that these "I've heard of these people, why haven't I heard of this movie?" typically fall into two categories -- they are either simply bad or sort of weird. Miss Nobody falls between those two criteria. (And like a lot of these movies, Miss Nobody sat on the shelf for a while, as it was shot in 2008.) In the film, Sarah Jane is presented as a quasi religious fanatic, as she prays to St. George for guidance and protection. Every time something goes her way, she assumes that it's St. George's guiding hand. However, these scenes often feel like they are happening to a different character in a different movie. Sarah Jane is presented as being shy, yet resourceful, and eventually a cold-blooded killer. And yet, every few minutes, we see her praying to her St. George shrine or talking about St. George (the movie is filled with voiceover). This doesn't gel with the rest of the movie. These scenes feel like something from a wannabe hip indie film, while the other scenes barely register above the level of a made-for-TV movie.
Which brings us to the real problem with Miss Nobody -- despite a solid cast (I didn't mention the other familiar names/faces like Adam Goldberg, Vivica A. Fox, Geoffrey Lewis, and Sam McMurray) the movie never strives to be anything truly different or unique. The main story, in which Sarah Jane realizes that she'll stop at nothing to get ahead, is reminiscent of movies like 9 to 5 and Working Girl. We've seen these sort of working-place comedies before, and Miss Nobody seems to know this, as it flaunts every stereotypical character from these movies (the mouthy secretary, the "handsy" guy, the old man, etc.). But, instead of being a part of the joke, these simply come across as hackneyed characters. If you didn't know what the film was about going in, some events in the first act may come across as shocking, but after that, things get pretty predictable. The second half of Miss Nobody becomes one of those movies where we (the audience) don't want the murderer to get caught, as they are the main character. This idea has been played to death (no pun intended) and this movie does nothing new with it. Of course, Miss Nobody really lost me when Adam Goldberg was introduced as a tough cop.
Miss Nobody makes a lot of mistakes, and if features a plot point which always bothers me -- How come in movies a person will threaten someone who has committed murder in the past? If I knew that someone was capable of killing, I wouldn't mess with them. That aside, Miss Nobody opens with promise, and Leslie Bibb, who is in nearly every frame of the movie tries her best to bring some life to the movie (and looks good doing it), but the result falls flat. Director Tim Cox had previously worked on movies for SyFy...maybe he should go back there.
Miss Nobody offers Leslie Bibb a very questionable wardrobe on DVD courtesy of Inception Media. The film has been letterboxed at 2.35:1 and the transfer is enhanced for 16 x 9 TVs. The image is fairly sharp and clear, showing no intrusive grain and no defects from the source material. The colors look very good, most notably bright tones such as the reds. However, the image is somewhat dark at times. More notable is the lack of detail. The image is soft and while never blurry, the edges of objects look muddy and never jump into focus. The DVD carries a Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track which provides clear dialogue and sound effects. For a comedy, this is a somewhat lively track. Thunderstorms offers some obvious surround sound and subwoofer effects. The in-film music sounds good and the office scenes provide detailed stereo effects. A passing subway train is often used as an editing device and this moves nicely from the right to left front channels.
The lone extra on the Miss Nobody DVD is a TRAILER for the film.
Review Copyright 2011 by Mike Long